Blue Utopia*

Company Review Rating

Service rating: 
0
Software rating: 
0
Price rating: 
0
Email: 
info@blueutopia.com
Number of Respondents: 
4
phone: 
866-258-5777
Headquarters: 
Seattle, WA
Company home page: 
http://www.blueutopia.com
Number of employees: 
6
Client examples: 

Jay Inslee for Congress (WA), Ross Hunter for Congress (WA), Washington State House Democratic Committee

Pricing: 
Subscriber fees from $100/month to $700/month; setup fees from $500 to $100.

Trace Anderson, the founder of Blue Utopia, brought seven years of enterprise software development with him when he started the company in 2004. After he sold his last startup, Anderson got into local politics, and as a volunteer for state campaigns he witnessed major problems in the campaigns' use of technology. "Coming from a large software company, I saw there was a better way," Anderson says. "Software developers aren't often good at campaigning, and campaigners aren't often good at software development," says Anderson, and so he found his niche.

Trace Anderson, the founder of Blue Utopia, brought seven years of enterprise software development with him when he started the company in 2004. After he sold his last startup, Anderson got into local politics, and as a volunteer for state campaigns he witnessed major problems in the campaigns' use of technology. "Coming from a large software company, I saw there was a better way," Anderson says. "Software developers aren't often good at campaigning, and campaigners aren't often good at software development," says Anderson, and so he found his niche. Blue Utopia doesn't build custom web sites or sell consulting services, but rather sells its standardized proprietary software to political campaigns, making it easier for smaller, local campaigns to build web sites for less money.

About the Software: 

Blue Utopia uses its proprietary content management system for all campaigns. The content management system, called the Blue Utopia CMS, is web-based and therefore accessible from anywhere, and specializes in push-button filing of compliance reports, fundraising, and field management. The system is customizable, with several modules built for particular tasks, including a web site manager, an email list manager, a constituent manager, a PAC database, and a finance manager to keep track of all donations. The system also includes Palm-based software that lets volunteers easily input information collected from the field into a central database. This central database can be accessed by anyone working on a campaign -- from field volunteer to campaign manager -- and is tied into the many modules that can be added on to the CMS. The goal, Anderson says, is "data from everywhere accessible from everywhere." In addition, the software is made to be as easy to use as possible. "It should take volunteer on a campaign 90 seconds to learn and use constituent manager," Anderson says.
Blue Utopia offers a full package of software service; in addition to installing their CMS, they establish email accounts for everyone in the campaign, host the web site, execute nightly backups, ensure security and data privacy compliance, and import existing voter/supporter files.

Client Quick-take: 

Who's using what?

  • In the two months leading to the 2006 mid-terms, the Ohio Democratic Party used Blue Utopia's system to build an online audience and lists of volunteers
  • Jay Inslee for Congress used the Blue Utopia CMS to dramatically improve its database and integrate offline events into the system.
  • To make up for having no staff, Ross Hunter using Blue Utopia for push-button compliance
Client Close-up: 

For the moment, Blue Utopia is mostly focused on local campaigns, state parties, and caucus groups in Ohio and Washington state because of their relatively less expensive software. Their approach is geared toward smaller campaigns that can't afford more expensive systems; instead they offer standardized software that, while less flexible than more expensive software, has proven to work well in political campaigns. However, Blue Utopia is also planning take their standardized approach to national-level campaigns in the near future.

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